Seychelles to host XIX Indian Ocean colloquium on HIV/Aids, hepatitis and addictions |14 September 2023
In the context of the regional response to HIV/Aids as a major public health issue, the government of Seychelles will host the XIX Indian Ocean Colloquium on HIV/Aids, Hepatitis and Addictology (colloque) on November 13, 14 and 15, 2023.
Seychelles last hosted the colloque in 2010 and 2015.
In a press release issued this week, the health ministry stated that with the backdrop of a global HIV campaign of taking action to end inequalities, the theme is ‘VIH au Cœur des Soins Intégrés et Accessibles’.
After four years of absence due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the ‘colloque’ will bring together about 200 representatives from the Comoros, Mayotte, Madagascar, Mauritius, Rodrigues, Réunion, Maldives and Seychelles, as well as representatives from multilateral and bilateral organisations, governments, private sector and the civil society.
“This conference is an important platform on which these various sectors involved in all facets of HIV-related work, including caregivers, civil society, persons living with HIV/Aids/hepatitis and the media, will discuss issues, exchange ideas, share best practices and get updated on HIV and hepatitis prevention, care and support,” read the statement.
According to the ministry, the ‘colloque’ is a strategy to re-energise the island communities, bringing new life into the HIV and Aids agenda and seeks to sustain gains made since 1986, when the first person was reported with HIV in the sub-region.
“It is an opportunity for representatives of governments, civil society and other organisations to renew their engagement in work related to HIV, hepatitis and addictions,” it added.
It also offers a fitting occasion to strengthen cooperation networks among the Indian Ocean islands, it said.
Overall, the general consensus among stakeholders is that, since its first session in 2002, the ‘colloque’ has had unique and far-reaching benefits to individuals, families, organisations and society as a whole.
The main activities over the three days will include plenary sessions, parallel workshops and an exhibition.